Room Energy Management System: Room temperatures are controlled using the guest room key within energy efficient temperature range limits. The default setting for air conditioning resets to 75 degrees when the room is unoccupied to conserve energy. Hotel room refrigerators are powered down when the room is unoccupied.
• Water conservation: Low flow showerheads and faucet aerators are installed in all hotel rooms to reduce water consumption.
• Laundry efficiency: Housekeeping changes sheets and towels only upon request to conserve electricity and water, and water efficiency laundry practices.
• Recycling: Everything possible is recycled, including: cardboard, paper, plastic, aluminum, wood, electronics, and yellow grease. Partially used bars of soap and shampoo bottles are recycled and redistributed worldwide though our partner community organization Clean the World. Used cooking oil is recycled into bio-fuel.
• Efficiency in meal preparation: We use a process in our meal preparation that increases the life span of cooking oils. Recent tests show we can extend the life span of oil by up to 150% through lower oil absorption rate in food cooked utilizing a specialized frying technology. Not only is food lighter, crisper, healthier and lower calorie, but we use far less oil in preparing meals. Similarly, food can be cooked at lower temperatures with faster cooking times, reducing energy consumption.
Energy efficiency: We use a thermal imager to detect problems in our electrical components and equipment that lead to inefficiencies in energy consumption. The thermal imagers enable us to audit our entire electrical infrastructure and take corrective action to conserve energy. In addition, in 2012, we converted the process of cooling for our air conditioning from compressor units to chilled water units. This reduced overall electricity consumption between 10% and 20%.
Engaging Our Suppliers
We know that our influence extends throughout our supply chain and we aim to understand the impacts associated with our diverse array of suppliers. In 2012, we began requesting our suppliers to provide information about their sustainability practices and reporting policies. Our aim is to identify and reward those suppliers that offer eco-friendly products and use recycled or other sustainably sourced materials, such as those complying with green certifications such as Green Seal, Eco-Logo, Green Guard, LEED, Organic, and Rainforest Alliance. More than 180 suppliers have opted in to submit their information and we continue to work to engage more suppliers.